US to impose 10% tariffs on $300B in Chinese goods
US President Trump announced on Thursday that the US will impose 10 percent tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese goods. This comes just after US representatives returned from trade talks in China. Trump tweeted that the talks were constructive, but China had agreed to buy agricultural products from the US, “in large quantities, but did not do so.” The tariffs are set to take effect on September 1. The tariffs could increase or decrease depending on how future trade negotiations play out. The president even mentioned, “It can be lifted to well beyond 25%.”
If the additional tariffs take effect, every good coming into the US from China, minus a few exemptions, will have a tariff applied to it, ranging from 10 to 25 percent. The most recent threat would impact more consumer products like electronics, apparel, and toys. This move would put downward pressure on demand and the energy used to ship these goods. Crude oil and diesel markets plummeted due to the news. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) dropped roughly 8 percent or down $4.63/bbl, which is the largest one-day drop since July 2018. Diesel followed suit and dropped over 10 cents per gallon or roughly 4 percent.
Why BNSF is bucking the PSR trend and adding logistics centers
Precision Scheduled Railroading (PSR) has been a hot topic in transportation and has become the industry standard for most Class I railroads. PSR is a strategy that aims for railways to run fewer, faster, and longer trains in the hope of gaining a lower operating ratio and remove inefficiencies in their network. BNSF is the one US railway that is going against the strategy. They are planning to add logistics centers to serve their customers in metropolitan areas, instead of removing them. The company is expanding in Hudson, CO; Fontana, CA; Oklahoma City, OK; Sweetwater, TX; and Wilmington, IL. The hope is to expand volumes in agriculture and intermodal.
In Other News
Drilling rig owners and others who lease equipment to U.S. energy producers forecast a slowdown in activity during the second half of the year as natural-gas prices plumb lows and exploration-and-production companies exhaust their budgets.
Colorado and major automakers said on Monday they have reached a deal on the state’s plan to adopt California’s zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) requirements after earlier talks had ended without a deal.
BP has not taken any of its oil tankers through the Strait of Hormuz since a July 10 attempt by Iran to seize one of its vessels, the British company’s Chief Financial Officer Brian Gilvary said on Tuesday.
At a time of slowing freight volume and an increasingly adequate supply of power units, the average used Class 8 truck still brought a higher sales price in June than in the same month a year earlier, according to ACT Research.
The UK has invited military representatives of the US, France and other European countries to a meeting in Bahrain on Wednesday in an attempt to create an international mission to safeguard shipping through the strait of Hormuz.
According to NACFE Executive Director Mike Roeth, the concept of intentionally pairing tractors and trailers is an offshoot of the evaluation vehicle work done in the SuperTruck program. SuperTruck is a set of joint research projects by the Department of Energy working with OEMs to develop highly advanced Class 8 tractor-trailers. The goal is to help evaluate new design philosophies and components with an eye toward enhancing fuel economy in long-haul fleet operations while cutting emissions.
The Federal Reserve moved to cut interest rates by a quarter-percentage point—the first reduction since 2008—in a pre-emptive strike to cushion the economy from a global slowdown and continuing trade tensions.
The economies of Mexico and the United States are among the most integrated into the world, with 80 percent of Mexican exports moving north to US companies and consumers. The US is Mexico’s largest trading partner, and at points this year Mexico outstripped China to be the largest US trading partner.
South Korea’s merger of Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. and the Beijing-engineered marriage of China Shipbuilding Industry Corp. and China State Shipbuilding Corp. will create two behemoths that will control around 46% of the global market among the world’s top 10 yards, according to marine data provider VesselsValue Ltd.
In contrast, to the majority of Class I railroads shedding lines and closing yards under the precision-scheduled railroading (PSR) philosophy, BNSF is adding logistics centers to serve customers in metropolitan areas.
Three years after making a major splash into the last-mile business, Schneider National has pulled the plug on the venture amid persistent operating losses and an inability to gain traction on fierce competition.
Iran’s crude oil exports last month were either less than two supertankers’ worth, or as much as one of the giant vessels every two days, depending on who has the most accurate data.
Libya’s oil production plunged to a five-month low this week, dragged down by another outage at the country’s largest oil field.
Trump told reporters outside the White House Thursday negotiators from the U.S. and China would meet again in early September. He said the reason for the Sept. 1 tariff implementation date was not to allow negotiation time, but rather because “it takes a long time for the ships to come over.” Also see, Trump Threatens New Chinese Tariffs, Rattling Investors Across Markets.
U.S. job growth slowed in July and manufacturers slashed hours for workers, which together with an escalation in trade tensions between the United States and China could give the Federal Reserve ammunition to cut interest rates again next month.
The standoff between Washington and Beijing has cost China its position as the U.S.’s top trading partner, a shift that could accelerate as President Trump moves to ratchet up tariffs even more.